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Subject: Fire damaged paper

Fire damaged paper

From: Sharon Gavitt <bm.nsa_at_rlg>
Date: Tuesday, January 11, 1994
As a result of the 1911 fire at the State Capitol we have voluminous
fragile papers requiring treatment. Many of these records are rolled
petitions that have become fused together by seam adhesives or possibly

To separate the sheets we would carefully waggle a teflon spatula
between the sheets until they loosened. Otherwise fused sheets would be
separated by a poultice

Since these documents are scheduled for microfilming, my major concern
is handling of this fragile material. We make our own acid-free tissue
paper folders to house each burned document individually, with enough
margin to allow for grasping and opening.  Polyester film folders create
too much static pulling the shards of paper apart. Regular acid-free
folder stock is too rigid too support the document while handling.

After unwinding and/or unfolding the burned materials they do not lay
flat. We humidify the charred documents after tissue foldering them and
flatten them between blotters and boards. The tissue foldered documents
and then stored into map folders(10 items per folder) and enclosed into
a flat storage box.

NY State Archives

                  Conservation DistList Instance 7:50
                Distributed: Wednesday, January 12, 1994
                        Message Id: cdl-7-50-003
Received on Tuesday, 11 January, 1994

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